Employees at ZEISS

The qualified and dedicated staff of ZEISS form the basis for the company's ongoing success, innovative strength and state-of-the-art technology. As a responsible employer, ZEISS promotes diversity in its workforce and the continuous development of its employees, while providing them with an attractive working environment.

ZEISS has a headcount of almost 25,000 employees around the world. Spread across 30 production and over 50 sales and service locations and about 25 research and technology sites, they contribute to the company's success on a daily basis through their knowledge and skills. The company is headquartered in Oberkochen in southwestern Germany.

  • Corporate Culture

    ZEISS lives up to its commitment to social responsibility and attaches great importance to collaboration based on fairness. The representation of employee interests is anchored in the Foundation Statute – as shown by the constructive and trust-based interaction between the company's management, employees and employee representatives. ZEISS also considers it important to proactively work on the corporate culture. 

    Rollout of a Company-Wide Initiative

    A company-wide initiative to sustainably anchor the corporate values in the Group was launched in 2008. Team workshops were held at which the participants worked on the implementation of the corporate values in their day-to-day work. During a second phase, employees from various departments met and worked on enhancing the collaboration in the Group. The objective of the current, third phase is to further promote the topic in the organization.

    The LEAD Program at ZEISS

    In addition, ZEISS is continually working on its leadership and corporate culture. In fiscal year 2012/13, ZEISS developed a worldwide Manager Development Program called LEAD (Learn, Execute, Achieve, Develop) in conjunction with Harvard Business School. This program focuses on the strategy and Values of ZEISS and the brand identity as well as a range of management topics. About 800 managers are actively involved in the program.

  • Diversity at ZEISS

    In the demanding technological environment, ZEISS challenges its employees to perform well on a daily basis. The diverse skills, experience and perspectives of the employees provide ZEISS with a substantial competitive advantage and increase its attractiveness as an employer.

    ZEISS does not tolerate discrimination of any form on the basis of sex, age, cultural background or any other personal characteristic. ZEISS has set out rules governing equal treatment for all and respectful coexistence in the ZEISS Code of Conduct. This document is valid throughout the world and adherence to it is overseen by the Corporate Compliance Office.

    ZEISS has defined a total of four basic dimensions of diversity.

    Professional background Internationality Age Gender
    Diverse career trajectories Mixture of cultures and nationalities Different generations and levels of experience Balanced proportions of men and women

    Overview of selected ZEISS Actions

    Mentoring exchange with students of Aalen University.
    "KarMen" is a careers and mentoring program at Aalen University in which students are assigned a mentor from industry. This is aimed at personal development and the advancement of students' skills as well as the furtherance of their careers.


    Network for New Employees
    With a view to making it easier for new employees to find their feet at ZEISS and promoting networking across the entire company, ZEISS has established a string of different networks: the International Club (INC) in Oberkochen and Jena, the Newcomers’ Club and the Young ZEISS network in Germany.

    The INC at ZEISS in Oberkochen was set up in 2012. IT It facilitates networking between ZEISS employees of various nationalities. The INC currently has over 170 members from more than 40 countries. The Jena site now has its own INC, which was founded at the end of 2013. The Newcomers’ Club and the Young ZEISS network is a place for employees from all business groups to come together, with the aim of strengthening professional and personal ties.

  • Health and Safety

    Safety in the workplace and the protection of the health of all employees is a fundamental principle of ZEISS, which has been enshrined in the Foundation statutes and in the ZEISS Code of Conduct.

    Occupational Safety

    Responsibility of the Management
    The management of the business groups is required to establish and monitor a safety organization. Each superior is responsible for the protection of his/her employees and must provide instruction, training and supervision. In order to determine and evaluate risks to and strain on individuals, all management personnel are required to carry out regular risk assessments which identify and evaluate risks to individuals and their health at their workstations. This includes the organization of occupational healthcare. Standardized key indicators of the International Labor Organisation (ILO) are determined and assessed to evaluate occupational safety at both a national and an international level.

    The ILO KPIs of the ZEISS production sites worldwide are being measured centrally since fiscal year 2012/13. The data are consolidated and evaluated. Various KPIs are identified and evaluated for accidents occurring at work and on the way to and from work.

    Medical Treatment Cases (MTC) Lost Time Injuries (LTI) Total Recorded Injuries (TRI)
    the number of accidents occurring at work and on the way to and from work incurring downtime shorter than one calendar day (with reference to one million working hours). the number of accidents occurring at work and on the way to and from work incurring downtime longer than one calendar day (with reference to one million working hours).
    If a person affected by an accident is unable to come to work the following day, it is considered an LTI case.
    Sum of both indicators

    Health Management

    Health promotion at ZEISS contributes to the sustainable creation of a modern working environment. In this context, ZEISS offers its employees numerous precautionary measures over and above the legal framework conditions, as well as sports offerings and cooperative initiatives with external organizations.

    Health promotion at ZEISS is controlled by both local and cross-site work groups. This is aimed at the strategic orientation as well as the subsequent implementation at the respective sites.

    A Range of Initiatives Aimed at Promoting Employee Healthcare

    Einstein marathon in Ulm, Germany
    In September 2015 the 314 runners in the ZEISS Sports Team took part in the Einstein marathon in Ulm. The team comprised employees from various ZEISS sites – some of them making the trip from as far away as Italy – and notched up a string of victories. ZEISS covered an impressive 4,768 kilometers to defend its 3rd place in the ranking, beating more than 250 other corporate teams; the decisive factor is the total number of kilometers run . ZEISS assumed the costs for the entry fee and the sportswear for its employees.

    The ZEISS Sports Team was exceptionally motivated and showed great team spirit, not only on the track. The employees ran for a good cause, collecting donations for the Unicef Refugee Crisis Appeal.  

    Health Day in South Africa
    In 2015 the ZEISS site in Johannesburg held a Health Day for employees: tips for a healthy lifestyle were shared in an attempt to curb health risks. There were also opportunities to take part in healthy games and sporting activities: 40 employees got the chance to be tested for diabetes and cholesterol, have their blood pressure taken and be weighed. A zumba course was also on offer to them. The feedback received was very positive and ZEISS in South Africa would now like to hold an annual wellness day.

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